FCBB fights for Finals return to Munich
All or nothing: For FC Bayern's basketball players, there is no more room for excessive mistakes in the third game of the BBL Finals at Alba Berlin (Friday, 19:00). If they lose again in the sold-out arena at Berlin's Ostbahnhof with 14,500 spectators, the hosts will celebrate their third victory to make it 3-0 and defend their title. The task is difficult for the Munich team in view of the first two games (86-73, 71-58) and the favorite is clearly identified. The easyCredit BBL "media newsletter" is already talking on the search for Berlin MVPs and gossip about winning the title.
Objectively speaking, Alba's very balanced squad performed so far in a commanding manner for about five of the eight quarters, especially in the second duel at the Audi Dome (46 to 37.5 % shooting, 40:32 rebounds). After being eliminated from the EuroLeague after regular season, the hosts have also been able to extend their BBL winning streak in the finals to a current 19 games. The FCBB on the other hand, have had similar bad luck with injuries, losing their top scorer Darrun Hilliard (broken collarbone) in the EuroLeague playoffs and then Corey Walden and now Vladimir Lucic (adductors), the third presumed starting five player, is definitely out.
Lucic is officially out
But "now is not the time to look for excuses," stresses head coach Andrea Trinchieri in recognition of a deserved 2-0 Berlin lead. His group nevertheless wants to fight for a return to the Audi Dome court despite all odds: If they win on the road Finals Game 4 would take place in Munich on Sunday afternoon (15:00.)
Berlin's first chance for the championship win on Friday will be broadcast live by MagentaSport and Sport1. It can also be seen via the video cube in the Audi Dome at a free public viewing.
Trotz der runden Berliner Vorstellung im Münchner Heimspiel wollen sich die Bayern mit aller Macht wehren, schon beim fünften Halbfinale in Bonn (87:74) stand man wie jetzt vor ausverkaufter Auswärtshalle „mit dem Rücken zur Wand" (Trinchieri). Damals allerdings mit Lucic, dessen Selbstvertrauen und Fingerzeige am Dienstag arg vermisst wurden.
Alba ahead in rebounding and shooting percentage
"Of course, Lucic is a player through whom we run a lot, but we also have other guys who play in a different system and can help us," says captain Nihad Djedovic. He added that they were looking for mistakes in their own ranks and not in the team doctors' bulletin: "We tried (on Tuesday) to play big and get the ball inside, but we lacked determination overall. We analyzed what we did wrong, especially in the second quarter, and now we have to reduce the mistakes."
The FCBB have a lot of experience and, as mentioned, know how to keep a cool head in difficult situations; to mobilize the last reserves of strength and to win games as they have done so often over the last few seasons. And so Nihad Djedovic says: "As long as we play, we have hope. We're not going to Berlin without hope."
According to Trinchieri, in order to deny the home fans the championship celebration in their own living room, Bayern will have to win the rebounding duel for the first time and increase their offense compared to the second game of the series. On Tuesday, only Deshaun Thomas (13) got to double-digit scoring against Berlin. So what center Leon Redosevic later called "our growing nervousness" crept in early.
On Friday, nervousness is superfluous, Berlin is clearly on top and on the move.
Die BBL-Finals 2022 (0:2)
Friday, June 17, 19:00.: Alba Berlin - FCBB
*Sunday, June 19, 15:00.: FCBB - Alba Berlin
*Tuesday, June 22, 20:30.: Alba Berlin - FCBB